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Erik ten Hag sends special message to Kobbie Mainoo in Man Utd programme, he rates him so highly

Erik ten Hag sends special message to Kobbie Mainoo in Man Utd programme, he rates him so highly

Kobbie Mainoo will miss the 'first part' of the 2023/24 season with an ankle injury.

Erik ten Hag has reserved a special mention for Kobbie Mainoo in the latest Manchester United programme – and it shows how highly he rates the youngster.

It was confirmed last week that the highly-rated midfielder will miss the 'first part' of the 2023/24 season with an ankle injury, with further reports suggesting he could be sidelines for two months.

Mainoo, who was one of United's standout performers on their pre-season tour of the United States, was handed a much-deserved start in their clash against Real Madrid on July 27.

But in the opening stages at the NRG Stadium in Texas, the 18-year-old was escorted off the field after Brazilian forward Rodrygo landed on his leg following a challenge from Casemiro.

Many have tipped the Stockport-born midfielder to break into Erik ten Hag's first-team squad in the coming weeks but now, he will have to bide his time.

That being said, many are convinced Mainoo will get his chance to shine this season after Erik ten Hag decided to send the academy product a message in the official matchday programme.

Ten Hag, who is often reserved when it comes to praising a player, said: “Pre-season has also been a time for our Academy talents to show their ability.

"I should reserve special mention for Kobbie Mainoo, who suffered an injury against Real Madrid but had already shown his potential among the senior squad.

"We all wish him a speedy recovery and hope to have him back in contention soon."

The Dutch manager also opened up about their pre-season preparations in the programme notes ahead of Saturday's friendly against French side Lens.

He added: “As I always say, there is no such thing as a friendly and we go into pre-season games wanting to win, just as we do in every fixture.

"However, the result does not matter as much in pre-season as the preparation these games provide for the start of the season later this month,” he wrote in the official matchday programme for the clash.

“Already this summer, we have won games and lost games, but all of them have been valuable experiences and can help our development.

“For example, it was pleasing for us to put in a strong performance against Arsenal in New Jersey, but we also got benefits from our defeat to Real Madrid in Houston, where two of our new signings continued their adaption to the team and we were given a reminder about the need to finish off our chances in front of goal.”

In a statement on their official website, Manchester United provided the following update on Kobbie Mainoo's injury.

"Manchester United can confirm that Kobbie Mainoo suffered an ankle injury during the match against Real Madrid on Tour 2023. The midfielder is expected to be ruled out for the first part of the 2023/24 season.

"He has flown home from Tour to the UK where further assessment of his injury will take place before a medical decision on the next steps."

United added: "Everyone at the club wishes Kobbie a speedy recovery."

Mainoo, meanwhile, posted an update via his Instagram account. "I’ll be back stronger and in no time," he wrote. "Thanks for your messages of support."

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Manchester United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Premier League, Erik Ten Hag